Crockery Township is not part of the Spring Lake library district. At present, only Spring Lake Township and Spring Lake Village make up the district.
As nonresidents, Crockery Township residents must pay $88 per library card for limited services at Spring Lake District Library. Those services do not include inter-library loans, e-books or other digital services.
The grassroots Crockery Library Readers group approached the township and library late last year about setting up services, and those talks are progressing toward a ballot proposal.
The library board last week informed Crockery Township officials of their willingness to allow township residents access to full library services in exchange for a 0.5-mill levy to fund operating expenses, ongoing penal fines, state aid and $86,750 of escrowed penal fines. The library board appears willing to enter into a five-year agreement under those terms, but township officials want a longer contract.
“We asked for 20 years and they came back and said five,” Township Supervisor Leon Stille said. “We came back and said we need at least 10. That item has not been resolved.”
Stille said he also prefers that the escrowed penal fees that are in the hands of the county treasurer be spread out over the length of the contract.
If library and township officials can iron out the differences, the 0.5-mill request could appear on the November ballot, according to Stille.
Originally, the Crockery Library Readers group was under the impression residents could have full library services for a third of a mill tax, but that is the minimum amount required by the Lakeland Library Cooperative. The 0.5 mill, a number reached by the library board, reflects a more accurate cost of the service, according to Stille.
If voters approve the proposal, the millage would generate about $68,000 a year, Stille said. State aid would bring in about $2,000 a year and penal fines another $13,000.
To read more of this story, see Saturday’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.